Month: June 2010
Virtual Shackles is a webcomic about games by two guys that’s fast surpassing the original two-gamers webcomic, Penny Arcade. In today’s strip, they combine two games I’ve been playing a lot lately: Bit.Trip Runner (Nintendo WiiWare) and Robot Unicorn Attack (Flash, free & iPhone, $2.99).Both games are variations of the winning formula that Canabalt (Flash, free) defined – a character constantly runs forward, and the player is in charge of making sure it jumps at the right time. Bit.Trip Runner throws dodging, leaping, and kicking into the mix, making for an insanely hard but hugely satisfying reflex tester. It also happens to be rendered as an homage to blocky-pixeled retro games. Robot Unicorn Attack is pure madness from Adult Swim: a metal unicorn (double)jumps amongst the clouds to Erasure’s “Always”. Do well, and sky dolphins leap with you. It’s the epic bombast of Peggle’s Ode to Joy sequence meets the wacky, more forgiving Japanese run-jumper, Tomena Sanner (WiiWare & iPhone, $1.99).No comments on ➟ Virtual Shackles explains science
From 2003, Steve Jobs at the first All Things Digital conference. At this point, Apple had only sold 700,000 iPods after two years on the market, and the question of whether Apple would build PDAs and tablets was in the air. Steve said no, but his replies were conditional and it’s clear that the iPhone/iPad were brought to market only after satisfying all the shortcomings that these concepts had in 2003.On everything else they talked about, he was dead right. Microsoft’s just-announced tablets did fail, and handwriting technology is now irrelevant because everyone prefers the speed of typing. And yet Bill Gates just repeated the other day on Larry King that he still doesn’t believe in the iPad because it lacks pen support.
Update: 27 minutes in, Walt Mossberg gives him a few minutes to demonstrate the newly-launched iTunes Music Store. It’s a real masterclass in sales pitch delivery: passionate, concise, human.
Link [45min video at allthingsd.com]
Luther raises the bar for British television serials, granted that’s not usually saying much, but it raises said bar to the rafters. Starring the incomparable Idris Elba (who played Stringer Bell in The Wire) as detective John Luther, this six-part crime show will knock the wind out of you by episode five, I guarantee it.
Apropos of all the William Gibson reading I’m doing, this trailer for the third Deus Ex game looks incredible (thanks to Square-Enix). It’s actually a prequel to the first game released in 2000, but will still feature all the bionic augmentation you’d expect.I remember playing Deus Ex ten years ago and feeling the kind of thrill you get when a game lets you do something new. In this case, it was having advanced technology and a fleshed-out SF world in a first-person RPG. Instead of the usual spells and enchanted armor, it was cybernetic implants and nanobots in your bloodstream.
The company behind it describes itself as “an ad network” that wanted to see the richness of Flash ads come to devices like the iPad, without the need to rewrite code. It’ll be released soon, but have a look at the demos they’ve got up now with your Flash blocker on.
Great compositing work in this 30sec TVC for NTT DoCoMo’s new range of mobile phones. Insufferably chirpy yet irresistible, as you might expect from a musical Japanese sales pitch.
I think the girl is Kimura Kaela, a British-Japanese musician/idol.Link [YouTube]